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 Unquiet Contemplation

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Posts : 325
Join date : 2013-10-28
Location : Texas

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PostSubject: Unquiet Contemplation    Unquiet Contemplation  EmptyFri 15 Sep 2017, 22:16

Night-chilled water splashed around Eaton’s ankles as he crossed the streams flowing away from the Forked Ash. He had finished recounting their recent exploits to Jana, showing off his newest scar. He liked to think that her widened eyes and silence indicated concern and awe, rather than just the former. The Galliard and Aara had decided to look over the books stolen from Ingrid, but each had decided to reconvene in a few hours. That would allow him some time to regain the spiritual strength well spent from the day’s numerous battles.  

He soon found a quiet place some distance away, a small hill overlooking a rolling field with long grass swaying in the evening breeze, shimmering in the pale moonlight. He seated himself and took in a deep breath closing his eyes. The next pair of hours would just be between himself and the sacred mother.

A few hours instead became a few seconds.

Thoughts of Ingrid’s work frothed in his mind, interrupting his time of devotion, “Who knows what she was doing? Whole kingdoms have been brought down by someone readin’ something they shouldn’t! I mean, it’s gotta at least be interestin’ leafing through the workin’s of an insane witch!”

His let his eagerness subside for now, reaffirming his focus back to Gaia . . . ruminating on her will for not just him, but for the pack, the nation. Surely, the one remaining city will be free of its blight soon enough, saved from those who dare would harm the sacred mother . . .  

“Just burn those books? What a fool!  The thought of Brave-in-War rose to the forefront, “And if he was gift-wrapped a shiny sword, he would have taken it gladly! This is just a different kind of weapon! Why can’t they see that?”

His frustration began to swell,

“If she’s messin’ with the umbra, we can stage a trap remindin’ them that it’s our realm! If she wrote down her rituals, we know howta dispel ‘em! But no; apparently if I read these things it’s like walkin’ the spiral. Well, if I start carvin’ wyrm runes in my flesh, then they can worry.”    

A low growl in the back of his throat as he reminded himself,

“I mean, it ain’t like the wyrm hasn’t been in my head for almost my whole life. And I think I’m doin’ pretty damn fine despite . . .

He paused. He hadn’t actually told anyone of his latest vision. He shared that he couldn’t get anything insightful on what Zas believed was his father. But he didn’t say that it was as if something had stared back, watching him in that cave.

“Come now, this is when your gonna start worryin’? The battles of Nacogdoches, San Antonio, Houston . . . if the wyrm could see my every move, it would have snapped me up a long time ago. Hell, why even let me become a Garou? Woulda saved it a lot of trouble.”  

He realized this line of thinking would imply he even began to understand the enemy. A few minutes of daily insight hardly made him an expert.

“Well, I gotta know more than the Fianna or Get will ever care to, that’s for sure. And I got less reasons than ever to distrust the visions- if I don’t agree, I change it. Ain’t simpler than that.”
He then had a small laugh, “Funny, havin’ two gifts from the wyrm are now workin’ against it. And I was told by the Get to give up the horn, too. Is this how the Pure feel, called corrupted when they probably have a better idea on fightin’ than we do?”

Memoires of visiting Uktena’s homeland surged back to him, recalling the terrible creature imprisoned for eons. And how did the nation react, again?

“I even told all ‘em the Uktena can’t kill the bane so they locked it away! And what do the Get and all them think? That they oughta go and kill it ‘cause  ‘the injuns’ are too weak! Don’t ya think if it could be killed, the Uktena woulda done it, not just hole it up in their backyard?”

He cringed as his breathing slowed, “And why just claw and bite shit without understanding it first? Is it ‘cause they’re too stupid to understand the enemy- or are they just scared to? No, that’s not fair- they might just not have a good example among them.”

He smiled to himself, though it was hardly a noble one,

“Then I’ll show ‘em. Forget those damn books. We can’t just leap in and wreck the place without understandin’ who were fightin’. I’ll wring the answers out of the black spirals or the banes themselves if I have to. And I know exactly where to start.”

Eaton’s eyes still closed, the Gjallerhorn materialized in his grasp as he beckoned forth his latest vision. The opening of a cave stood before him, several pairs of eyes peering out of the blackness, narrowing as they focused on him. Though he could not see, he felt-no, knew- that this cavern spiraled downward, down into a restless void. Now he just needed to make his proper adjustments.

He called out to caverns entrance, “Though you may try and stalk me, I see your will, your desires, your dreams. But know this: I will see that they never come to pass!”

He attempted to make the creatures- or creature- move out so that he could see what lurked in the darkness. The eyes vanished. An unknowable span of time passed, but all that issued forth from that yawning gate was a trickle of acrid water. As Eaton watched, the trickle grew into a slow, even stream that pooled around the Bone Gnawer, growing ever larger but never deepening. The odor of the flood was heavy and poisonously sweet. Ripples danced across the surface, tremors that betrayed the passage of approaching footsteps. To Eaton's dismay he realized whatever drew near did not come from within the door- but from behind him. He whirled, catching a brief glimpse of smiling eyed horrors, beasts of cruel fury wearing men's skins like ill-fitting suits. They danced towards him, their movements mocking and capricious, ungainly but lightning-quick. With the surety borne of a dream Eaton knew these creatures had endured hell and poison and shell and steel, and now they stretched out their claws at the behest of their eternal master...

He woke up. The gate, the dancers, the toxic water, all of it evaporated into the field that stretched before him. He blinked, finding himself breathing heavily lying on his back. He stared up at the clear night sky. Why was he out here again?

Oh, right.

He noticed the moon had reached higher in the sky, indicating it was almost time for him to meet back with Aara. Without feeling the slightest bit rested he exhaled and rose to his feet, dismissing the fetish. He walked back to the Forked Ash wondering briefly about mentioning his latest vision to someone; then again there wasn’t much subtlety to interpret. So yes, he would mind his own business.  

After all, what aspiring Uktena wouldn’t keep a few secrets?
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